You may have noticed that The Standard looks a little different from the last time you logged in. That’s because today we’re launching The Standard version 3.0, and with it a new legal entity to own the site called, inventively, The Standard Trust.
So, why the new site?
Put simply, we felt the site had begun to outgrow its format. It was ticking along fine and probably could have gone on as it was for some time, but we decided we’d hit a wall and needed something fresher to drive the project forward. Hence the Standard v3.0.
More compact front page. We have a tension between readers who enjoy seeing plenty of posts and those who don’t have the time to visit so often and end up missing posts that would have interested them but have dropped off the front page. Likewise, we have a number of writers who are sometimes all keen to write but no one likes to see their carefully written piece disappear miles down the screen within hours. We have moved from having only a few posts per day to having ten to fifteen posts a day. Having a front page with small excerpts from each post balances these factors. The posts don’t disappear down the page so quickly (you’ll be able to see the excerpts without as much scrolling) while still allowing plenty of posts to be published. We’ll also be able to make the top post sticky to give particularly substantive or newsworthy posts more time at the top.
Ads. We’ve been pissing a bit of money away, basically. We could be using that money to pay for the server, rather than out of Lynn’s wallet and the generous donations. We can also use it for enhancing The Standard and left activism. The point of ads is not to enrich ourselves. The money will be held by The Standard Trust and used to pay for the site and to advance the progressive left principles the site was founded on.
Wider contribution. The idea of this site has always been to be a focal point for a community, not just one person’s voice or one group of people’s voice. To facilitate more guest posts, we’re introducing a ‘contribute post‘ page, which you can get to by clicking on the friendly green button.
New faces. At the same time as encouraging more guest posts there will be the normal turnover of authors and we’ll be bringing on a few new authors who will be using their real names, and not just having their identities behind the pseudonyms being well known – like Lynn or Rochelle. However we will continue to protect the identities of those who choose to protect their pseudonyms against ill-informed speculation. The reasons for having a pseudonym policy are discussed in the About.
Cool stuff. We reckon the new look is awesome and there’s some cool new features. Francis has put in a hell of a lot of time and effort, we’ve been lucky to have someone with his skills be so generous. While working within the constraints of the WordPress engine he’s managed to draw on the look of some of the best news sites around. He’s been a pleasure to work with and we owe him a huge debt of gratitude.
Francis and Lynn have spent the last week or so getting everything synced up and running – it all seems pretty much good to go*. A huge amount of thanks from the rest of the authors (and, hopefully, from you) to both of them for all their work in creating The Standard v3.0.
The reason for this post being published under The Standard is due to the number of authors who have picked over the text. It is a composite view.